View Full Version : HUI Electromagnetic Field (Part 2) The sequel

Ray Fabi
03-16-1999, 08:02 PM
Due to popular demand, here it is. The long awaited sequel to the Mackie HUI Electromagnetic Field. It's called HUI Electromagnetic field "The sequel" And this sequel hopefully will be even better than the original.
For those of you freshly joining us, you can go back to my original post (Makie HUI Electromagnetic field) to get the whole story.

So Phil, what is Mackie really saying about the problem?

Ray Fabi (editor in chief of the HUI sequel)

[This message has been edited by Ray Fabi (edited 03-16-99).]

Phil Buckle
03-17-1999, 02:30 AM
Well the good news is we are going to get a definite answer. It turns out that my local rep...a very helpful guy...is a personal friend of the Mackie guy who handles international enquiries. He is the type of fellow who will find out the TRUTH.
It was my reps opininon that the technique of many American tech help depts (at least the ones he had dealt with over the years) was to kill the customer with kindness and make like everything was or would be ok. The main aim was to placate the cusomer.
Ring any bells?
It seems that we should be able to cut through this bull**** in the next few days.

The letter I got from Dan today suggests that there is a fix by grounding one of the circuit boards. But his post also suggests that he knew nothing about the amount of people with this problem. Perhaps this was an example of the BS smokescreen. Anyway at least he replied.
I wait with interest but my HUI box and packaging is in the next room ready and also waiting.

Ray Fabi
03-17-1999, 06:06 AM
Well at least SOMEONE is getting some answers. Thanx Phil.
Keep us informed.
Ray Fabi

Ray Fabi
03-18-1999, 07:03 AM
This came form the origonal Post from MIKEY (Australia)
Hi everyone - here's another twist to the saga. I'm also in Melbourne, Australia and am a friend of Phil's. I've had my HUI for 6 months and fader wise, things have been great. I had heard of these problems but had none of them myself. Then last week I finally moved into my new studio. We're talking about a fairly big-buck affair with wiring properly done. AND NOW MY HUI IS DOING THE STICKY FADERS THING!! It pissed me off because it worked fine in a normal house with no thought of fancy wiring but in a purpose built studio, now the trouble comes. I'm in close contact with the tech down here who does the warranty repairs for Mackie in Australia, He claims to be in close contact with the Australian importers but the good news I got was that they are well aware of the problem. I say this is good because it sounds like they're not pulling the old, "you're the only person in the world with this problem" thing. He's repairing an analog problem on my HUI next week so I'll keep the grilling going then and report my findings here.

Ray Fabi
03-18-1999, 07:10 AM
Mikey, I had not really taken concern about the fact that you mentioned that your HUI worked fine in a non-studio environment, and when installed in a real studio, it did not work properly. Well, mine does exactly the same thing! If I remove it from my studio, and bring it in the kitchen, bingo! it works. I've actually thought of turning it into a microwave oven. With all the electromagnetic field issues, that thing probably would be more efficient generating waves to cook food.
Ray Fabi

03-21-1999, 10:18 AM
Hi Guys, happened to read all this and had a stupid thought - have you tried changing the lighting in your control rooms? (my studio is basically dark whereas my kitchen is all fluorescent). Sorry to waste your time if this was ridiculous - just a shot in the dark ;-)

Phil Buckle
03-23-1999, 03:56 AM
Hey Ray it's time for some more patience.
The international tech guy has now taken a copy of all these posts and is presenting them at an engineering meeting. This is where the real "tech heads" get together and things happen.
Now my local guy told me this......there are over 600 people working at Mackie and just because the Tech dept knows of a problem it does not mean that the engineers do. Communication can be a problem. He claims the only way we will get any action is if we actually get our problem vented in an Engineering meeting. This will happen in the next few days. Can you believe that they did not even know of the existance of this list and were suprised at the amount of posts? Once again, just because you complained to some people it does not mean that the organisation as a whole knows anything about this problem. Evidently no one wants to be the bearer of bad news so some people say nothing.
Be patient, we should know something soon. My rep tells me that usually when a problem goes to engineering that it is soon fixed. Let's hope.

Ray Fabi
03-23-1999, 11:59 AM
Good news! Gee, it's about time. Thanx for the info Phil. Let's hope Mackie finally gets to the bottom of this ...
Godzilla, thank you for your suggestion, but my entire studio is lit with halogens with special expensive dimmers. Ideally it is "my belief" that fluorescent lighting should be kept away from a studio environment, all this because of noise induction and all the other problems inherent to fluorescent lighting. And, why should we have to change our lighting in the studio? It was worth trying. Actually, i remember (as a test for the faders) trying to generate a bit of interference with a small portable fluorescent light in the studio, and it did not do anything good.
Thanx guys!

03-23-1999, 11:54 PM
Ok guys, tomorrow I am installing my new HUI at my studio. I brought it home tonight to get familiar with it, where it works as advertised. So I'm bracing myself for it to not work at it's intended location...Film at 11pm......

Phil Buckle
03-24-1999, 02:30 AM
Well we finally have a solution. There is no solution. I have nothing but bad news I'm afraid.
The engineering meeting I talked about was held at Mackie. They agree that there is a problem with a small handfull of users but will not redirect any efforts from current projects to fix it. In my scenario they are happy to refund my money and I will take this course.
I can't believe it, I really wanted to keep this desk. I'm upset and I feel for all the other users who are having problems. I believe, after Mackies admition, that they have every right to demand their money back. The product is faulty. Sorry Ray.

Ray Fabi
03-24-1999, 06:16 AM
I never thought this would happen. I was really hoping Mackie would be professional enough, and knowledgeable enough to fix this design FLAW on their OWN equipment!
If the HUI does not get fixed, this whole mess will end up costing me $10,000 CDN more to get the only alternative that I know of - the Pro Control.
I'm extremely disappointed that Mackie cannot resolve this!
Too bad, I kinda liked the company...
Ray Fabi

[This message has been edited by Ray Fabi (edited 03-25-99).]

Nick Batzdorf
03-24-1999, 10:24 AM
These things are frustrating and I sympathize, but what if the only way to solve the problem would be to have the faders redesigned? That's not practical if they didn't sell very many HUIs.

There is an alternative on the horizon, by the way: CM Automation is coming out with a $1000 motorized control surface, sort of a baby HUI. No touch-sensitive faders, but the important features (i.e. faders) are there. www.cmautomation.com

03-24-1999, 10:44 AM
It's ALWAYS practical to make a product that works PROPERLY!

I've followed this thread from the beginning. Personally, I'm amazed at how much time Ray and Phil have spent trying to find a solution. I would have bailed a long long time ago. The one question I have is - have you guys had your HUI's swapped out for different ones to see if another HUI would work? Did Mackie refuse to try that?

Good luck... http://www.digidesign.com/ubb/images/icons/smile.gif

Ray Fabi
03-24-1999, 11:53 AM
Hey Disco and Nick.
As I'm transferinging my mixes from PT to TC Dat, I'm taking the time to go to this thread once again. I had three (3) HUI's for testing in my studio. They all had the "sticky fader" syndrome. It really is a design flaw! And Mackie sure knows about it NOW!
I will certainly check out the CM automation gizmo you're mentioning Nick... never know, might be a solution.
I agree with Disco, I should have bailed out of the Mackie HUI debugging session many moons ago. But, since the only valid alternative to the HUI (to my knowledge) is the Pro Control, and I cannot really afford it, I'm desperatly trying to make the HUI thing work. Not by choice, trust me, I do not have THAT much time to waste.
Thanx everybody.
Ray Fabi

[This message has been edited by Ray Fabi (edited 03-24-99).]

03-24-1999, 01:52 PM
Well, I installed mine this morning and I guess I got lucky. It initially is working fine. I'm hoping that this will stay this way because I really like this gadget!!!


Phil Buckle
03-24-1999, 03:54 PM
Hey I'm glad it's working for you. I liked mine to but it really is unuseable for me. Disco Doctor....yes I also had 3 different HUI's and although I only tried 2.....the first was broken out of the box....they both had the same problem. Also read Mikey's post. His was working until he moved it into the studio and then it showed the same symptoms as ours...and I think Rays works when it is in his kitchen!!! Go figure.
While I understand Mackie's dilemna I do not like the way this whole thing was handled by them. I'm not thankful for getting my money back as I believe that is my right as a customer.
I am however very thankful to my local rep who got to the bottom of this problem.

[This message has been edited by Phil Buckle (edited 03-24-99).]

03-24-1999, 04:42 PM
What about having a local genius audio equipment technician do a modification to your HUI's to make the suckers work? Why even bother with Mackie? I'm in LA, and I can think of a few guys off the top of my head who could probably dream up something in a matter of minutes...I'm not much of an electrical engineer (although I did completely dissassemble and reassemble a HUI once), but it seems to me that the circuit which "senses" your fingers can't be all that complicated.

Let me know if you'd like a referral for a good tech in the LA area...


Phil Buckle
03-24-1999, 06:25 PM
Well for a start I'm in Australia. That would void the warranty of course. Anyway I have wasted enough time on this issue and I'm trying to finish an album.
And, you know.....I liked my HUI......I didn't LOVE my HUI. Good riddance.
The technology is 2 years old, maybe this was a blessing.

Ray Fabi
03-24-1999, 06:37 PM
Hey TMS, Disco, Phil and PPine. I too believe that Mackie should put an engineer full time on this for about a month to come up with (1) a new design for the faders or (2) a modification of some sort that would solve the problem. I did talk to a tech whiz here in Montreal who said that perhaps it would be possible to modify the pc board to allow the faders to work. A few problems though: it's someone else's design, it's rather small circuitry and we do not knowe how long it would take to figure out the problem. BUT, why should I pay a tech or engineer to come up with the solution? Wouldn't it make more sense for Mackie to handle this on their engineering side? Doesn't Mackie have the resources to handle this? God what small thinking, and poor support...
Disco, at one point (and I hope it does not get to this) I might want a referal to solve this problem.
Thanx all
Ray Fabi

Mikey MTC
03-24-1999, 06:46 PM
My problem with the HUI is not as bad as Phil's. Phil can't move the faders at all. He grabs one and it's totally locked. My problem is a little more subtle. I tried it the other day and it was almost fine. I say almost, because the fader movement wasn't totally smooth (as it is when the unit is off) but it was usable. Other times you can feel the brakes coming on and releasing as you move the fader.

Ironically, mine's actually been in the repair shop all week for an analog problem but seeing Mackie's acceptance to give Phil a full refund, I'm also considering this option. The trouble is, there's no competition for this unit.

You can't call Pro Control competition when here in Australia it's 3 times the price. This new CM box doesn't have a control room section (something I dig on the HUI) and that's really the whole market. I really want to keep the HUI even though I've got a couple of other problems with mine that are supposedly "within spec" so nothing can be done about them.

As a closer - I refuse accept that Mackie are an unprofessional company and I refuse to adopt a knee-jerk hate position, the kind that is so prevalent on the net. Mackie want to succeed and Mackie want happy customers. They don't want bad publicity like this.

I think Phil nailed it when he said that just because we're screaming loudly here, doesn't mean the right people are hearing this. There must be a way to get the message to the RIGHT people at Mackie. I'm talking upper management and not engineering. And not a message that tells them that of the several thousand HUI owners out there, 5 are having a problem. I would bet the farm that the number is MUCH MUCH higher.


Ray Fabi
03-24-1999, 07:05 PM
I agree Mikey. But how do we get through to Mackie? I have tried my local rep, but unfortunately that did not pan out, I'm still waiting... I sure would try anything to get this machine to work, but what?
Anybody got a suggestion?
I'm in...

[This message has been edited by Ray Fabi (edited 03-27-99).]

03-24-1999, 09:15 PM
Hi Ray.

How about a poignant letter to Greg Mackie himself? If anyone is game, I recommend including a copy of this thread (and the original thread that preceded this one) and send it to him FedEx overnight.

I'm about at the end of my rope with this HUI ordeal, and at this point I'm not willing to take the time to write a letter to Greg Mackie myself. I'll give this problem one or two more weeks for a solution from Mackie, and then I'll be demanding my money back if it is not resolved.

In many ways, I'll be sorry to see it go. Other than the "sticky faders" problem, I really liked this piece of gear.

About time to jump ship,
Mark Locascio

03-25-1999, 12:34 AM
I am truly saddened to hear that Mackie is not seriously addressing this problem.

I can't help thinking that there is something (as far as solving this problem), missing from the equation. I'm aware of all the millions of things you and others have tried. Still I wonder... you say that if you grab the monitor or the back of the HUI that it works. So what is this adding to the equation? It doesn't seem to be an issue of YOU being grounded since you've tried using grounding plates etc. By the way did you try using grounding straps?? Does holding on to the monitor put some stray current through you body allowing the faders to work? Instead of holding the back of the HUI or a monitor could you wear the grounding strap with the other end attached to the back of the HUI or the monitor? It seems that in a well wired studio that there is not enough stray voltage around for you body to conduct to the faders.(IF this is even the principal on how the faders work) If I remember right you also tried different midi converters and cables etc. Looks like Mackie is really blowing it by saying that this is only happening to a few people. Has Mackie allowed you to talk one on one with an ACTUAL tech that builds these things or has there been the usual buffer zone of someone who represents himself as tech but really isn't?

best of luck

I just checked out that CM automation site mentioned a couple of posts ago. Looks very promising. I talked to one of there tech guys and they are specificaly targeting the pro-tools market. They think that it will ship in May

[This message has been edited by TMS (edited 03-24-99).]

Phil Buckle
03-25-1999, 02:33 AM
I think that Mikey's comments make a lot of sense. Mackie are a company that seems to understand their customers needs. I remember selling TAPCO desks back in the "old days" at the music shop I worked in and they were a revolutionary company in those times. I think that they still are when you look at where they are heading. I really think that they will address this problem but just not in the time frame that suits me right now. If I knew that a fix was coming in the next week or so I would gladly keep the unit. Heaven knows there's no replacement in the price range.
Anyway I refuse to start a slinging match against Mackie, that's not going to do anyone any good and there are no grounds for it.
This desk is exactly what I need and as I only lay the tracks in my studio I would probably never need to replace it if it were fixed..... unless I win the lottery.
Ray, remember that what I have related to you is NOT the official word from Mackie. They seem to be busy with the d8b but they will have to get around to this fix soon enough.
Keep emailing them till you find out what's going on.

Mikey said...
>>As a closer - I refuse accept that Mackie are an unprofessional company and I refuse to adopt a knee-jerk hate position, the kind that is so prevalent on the net. Mackie want to succeed and Mackie want happy customers. They don't want bad publicity like this.<<

I think this is the correct approach. There is no conspiracy. Just some communication problems.

Ray Fabi
03-25-1999, 05:38 AM
I'm going to try something here, as a final attempt. As suggested, I will write to Mackie (once again), and I will include the whole thread, and I will Fed-Ex it! I will also, get my dealer here in Montreal to call Mackie directly (he holds a lot of weight in the industry in Canada). I am also willing to put up with a little more of this, simply because there is no real other alternative at a competetive price. If Mackie, guarentees me that if the problem is not fixed they will reimburse full payment of the HUI, I will wait... a little longer. The clock is ticking...
I'm on the case.
Ray Fabi

PS: Honestly, if word gets around that the HUI is not a reliable unit, and sometimes does not work in studio situations, Mackie will lose out a lot more money than the money it would cost for them to modify their unit. Strictly and purely on a business point of view, Mackie should take care of this ASAP. Has anyone at Mackie considered this? Come on guys, make the HUI work, I mean really work in all real studio environments!

[This message has been edited by Ray Fabi (edited 03-25-99).]

03-25-1999, 10:12 AM
We currently have a Protools Mix System and are using Procontrol (which has NEVER given us any trouble). We are buying another system in a couple of weeks and were thinking of buying a Mackie HUI instead of another Procontrol to keep costs low. I was not aware of the HUI's many problems. I need some advice, should we never ever get us a HUI? Should we use mouse & keyboard until we can afford another Procontrol? I guess that's the way it's gonna be, because a friend of mine had a HUI and got rid of it when Procontrol came out a few months ago, at that moment I thought it was because he just wanted to upgrade but now I see what was probably happening.


Phil Buckle
03-25-1999, 04:01 PM
Hi Rocco, You should get the HUI in your environment and see if the faders work ok. They seem to be fine for most users. If they work in your environment then your decision is made.

Ray Fabi
03-25-1999, 07:45 PM
As Phil said, if the HUI works in your environment, go for it - it should work great in most situations - it just doesn't work in mine! Just make sure you get to try it for a couple of weeks in YOUR studio before you have to make a final decision. In the mean time, I'm sending Mackie a letter tomorrow, hoping they will respond to me in a positive way.
I'm keeping my fingers crossed.
Ray Fabi

03-26-1999, 10:29 AM
Thanks Phil and Ray, I guess I'll go for it and have a HUI for a 2 week trial period or so. I'll let you know what happens.

Ray Fabi
03-27-1999, 06:56 AM
There is hope! It's all I can say at this point, but there is hope...
Ray Fabi

03-28-1999, 07:51 AM
My Hui works in some ways, BUT channel 8 chatters once and a while, and the faders have sticky points, and I am suspicious that it adds noise overall to my system, and when I try to use the talkback mic port it adds an unbelievible amount of rf noise to the signal.Does anyone know of a fix for that problem in particular?

Mikey MTC
03-28-1999, 05:11 PM
How's this:
As readers here know, I've just moved down into a new studio and discovered that my HUI's faders no longer worked as smoothly as before. Yesterday I tried again and they were nearly perfect. They bit back a little but were pretty good. I'd call it usable. Oddly I asked my girlfriend to try them and she couln't move them reliably at all. We were both wearing rubber souled joggers.

I got her to sit in the same seat, place both feel flat on the floor and still nothing - yet for me it was almost OK. As usual, the moment she touched the meter bridge, full movement was restored. VERY ODD!! At least it's me who can use it and not her!

On the really bad side - one of the selling points of the HUI for me was the talkback facility. Today I've got my-first vocal session in my new room, so yesterday I was working out all the logisitics of how I'm going to do this (what to route where etc) and part of my plan was naturally using the HUI talkback in the equation until I discovered this:

The talkback level is affected by the master volume. Have a think about how stupid this is!! If we're monitoring loud in the control room, when I use the talkback it will be overly loud. If we're monitoring soft in the control room, the talkback will be too soft. (For the record I'm talking about my main monitoring coming from outs 1 and 2 and the talkback is coming out 5 and 6). This renders the whole talkback useless to me.

As a hacked up alternative I've got an old cheap mic patched through a pre and into a channel on Pro Tools. I'll have to mute and unmute the channel on the HUI as I want to use the talkback. OK unless the bank is scrolled off somewhere on the HUI, then I'll have to hunt for it. At least it's something.

To finish on an up - As I was designing my tracking and vocal template, the thing started to get quite complicated for reasons too messy to get into here. Having done it now and being quite happy with the felxibility of what I've come up with, there's no way I'd want to run it without a HUI. I can now get at most things really quickly. If the talent wants more track in the cans? No worries. More reverb in the cans? Easy. It's the whole two mixes thing - one for me and one for the talent and having complete and fast control over both including having an 03D slaved into the system with two mixes coming out of that as well.

The HUI makes it workable. A mouse would work but it's a lot harder and slower. Both together is the best solution.


Ray Fabi
03-30-1999, 07:33 AM
Today or tomorrow, I am meeting with my rep about the HUI issue. He says he had not heard of anything concerning the HUI problems... I have a feeling this fellow will try something with Mackie.

04-05-1999, 05:13 PM



Ray Fabi
04-06-1999, 12:04 AM
Radio Canada in Montreal supposedly ended up with the same "sticky fader" problem as some of us encountered with their HUI... I believe they were able to solve the problem (lucky them), and Mackie is definately aware of the issue. I will try to find out more about the whole thing.
Just keeping everybody aware of what's going on!
Ray Fabi

bjorn for a reason
04-17-1999, 10:28 AM
sounds like the things a piece of ****.. i'll keep using my old promix 01 faders midi style. has talkback and main out functions when im not using a "real studio"

Ray Fabi
06-19-1999, 01:52 PM
Well. I finally decided to give my HUI back and I bought a Pro Control (at four times the price $$$ mind you). In the end, there was no real indications nor expectations that Mackie could resolve the design flaw on THEIR own Hui. What a shame! So after a year of mixing (and cursing) only being able to use one fader at a time (since my other hand was busy being connected to a nearby "electromagnetic field" in order to get reasonable conductivity for the faders), I had no choice but to do it. As you know, I was really hoping Mackie could handle this, but for some unknown reason, this "problem" was not a priority for them, and I had no alternative but to switch over to the Pro Control... Perhaps, they only lost my sale, but personnaly, I believe thay lost a heck of a lot more than just one sale...
Thanx everybody for the help and support that all of you gave me.
Ray Fabi

Steve MacMillan
06-19-1999, 11:35 PM
As a Mackie stock holder I must say I'm very disappointed that so many people have had HUI problems and are not getting joy from Mackie. A pretty big tarnish on a previously spotless image. The HUI would be all I need if it only worked as well as the ProControl. Sad.


06-20-1999, 10:05 AM

I have a JL Cooper MCS 3800 midi controller. It uses the HUI profile. It has no control room section, but works great with Pro-Tools. It has moving faders and rotary encoders for plug-ins, etc and is expandable. Check it out. It is definately a good alternative to HUI and ProControl.

Roy Machado
Dallas Audio Post Group

06-20-1999, 11:11 PM
Ray, you are not the only sale they lost with their HUI product. I returned mine to Mackie several months ago and got my money back as well.

Unlike you, I didn't spring for a Pro Control. It's difficult for me to justify spending that kind of money for something that doesn't pass audio (unless of course, money is no object!). For the same reasons, it was hard for me to spend $2600.00 US on the HUI. In the end, my mixes will sound the same, with or without the HUI or Pro Control.

For now I've reverted back to using the keyboard and a graphics tablet.

Mark Locascio

06-21-1999, 12:13 AM
So far, I've used my HUI in four different locations, an have not had any of the problems that are being fought in this thread....Hmmm.... I live in Arizona...could it be the dry desert heat and lack of humidity!? http://www.digidesign.com/ubb/images/icons/smile.gif


Ray Fabi
06-22-1999, 07:55 AM
The JL Cooper stuff sounds interesting... Maybe I should have looked a little harder for an alternative for the HUI, but I knew the Pro Control worked, and I had very little time in the end to make a decision. As everyone knows, I had waited much too long to settle this issue. It was also hard for me to justify the expense for the Pro Control, but I figured that eventually, the expansion possibility might be of use. Too bad, cause the HUI was an interesting and fairly inexpensive alternative for the Pro Control, and I guess in normal situations, it seems to work fine. Glad it works for you PPine, for me it just did not!

06-22-1999, 09:01 PM
Hey Ray, every time I power mine up I think of your battle scars!!!

You will be the FIRST guy I email when it stops working!! http://www.digidesign.com/ubb/images/icons/smile.gif


06-23-1999, 07:38 AM
I was one of the first people to buy a HUI... I had purchased my entire system right when they came out, and I received one of the first units shipped. I had all the problems everyone has described, and eventually had the unit replaced by Mackie twice, who claimed in their overly friendly way that "you seem to be the only guy with any troubles." After about 3 weeks of pulling my hair out, I called them up and arranged to get my money back. No piece of equipment is worth that much headache in anyone's life.

ProControl wasn't even out yet at that point, so I waited... and guess what, my mixes sound great just using the mouse. I don't get stressed out and swear all through the day. I will be buying a ProControl very soon, but I waited this long after my Mackie experience to be sure all the kinks were worked out on it so that same headache wouldn't return.

I waited this long to reply about my HUI days because everyone's responses reminded me too much of the stressful days and nights I spent with that overpriced toy in my studio. As with everything else that's "Mackie" that I've ever used, it doesn't stack up to more professional alternatives, and no amount of friendly service can change that.


Ray Fabi
06-24-1999, 06:52 AM
I know exactly what you mean Kevin. In the end, that's why I got rid of the HUI. The Pro Control is more expensive than the HUI but there ARE major differences. I am just getting acquainted with it but for one, the monitor section sounds way better, and that's rather important if all your mixes are going through the board. It's strange but true. The gain, and headroom of the main input is quite impressive. After having monitored all my music through the HUI for over a year, and now listening back to the same music through the Pro Control's monitor section was a bit of a shock!!! It's transparent, and it simply sounds better. I am not exactly sure why, but it does. And above all, the FADERS work!!! God bless my studio! Any ways back to work.

06-24-1999, 01:11 PM
Ah yes, don't even get me started on the monitoring section of the HUI. I beg anyone still using a HUI to set up their monitors in some other way... believe me, the difference in sound quality will be noticeable. I was totally bothered by my playback through the HUI, on top of the other problems it had. Like all other Mackie products, it specs out good on paper but in reality it kills the sound. You are totally on in hearing a difference--and I'm VERY happy to hear that the ProControl sounds better. I was thinking I'd have to modify the ProControl monitor section electronics if it compared with the HUI's...


Jim Clark
09-27-1999, 03:45 PM
I don't have a HUI but I have been following these threads - and I am stunned! If this fix works for the others who have been through so much grief with this problem (and still have their HUIs), that will be wonderful, but how does this make Mackie look?!
Good luck, HUI users, and thanks blairl for having that conversation with Carl Malone at AES.

09-28-1999, 12:03 AM
OK, I went back to the very first post on this topic (part 1) by Ray Fabi to see where this all started. I too have been having problems with my HUI. The first channel would not release when I touched it. I had to reach for my 21 inch monitor with one hand and adjust the levels with the other hand in order to get the electromagnetic field going enough to release the fader. I have spoken with severl different people at Mackie and they have had no solutions for me. I even got so far as to have them agree to send me a new unit, which they never did by the way. OK so I've been living with this for a while now and here's the conclusion to the story:

I was at the AES show in New York talking with the salesperson at CM automation telling him of my nightmare with the HUI. He says, "you know you should talk to Carl Malone (not basketball) over here, he's the one who designed the HUI for Mackie". So I tell Carl Malone of my problems and he says, "Yeah there's a pot on the underside of the console that adjusts the sensitivity level at which the HUI releases the fader. Get your screwdriver in there and give it a try." So I did and MY PROBLEM IS COMPLETELY SOLVED. I have no more problems. It is working perfectly. I went on to tell him of the digi user conference and how so many people are upset because of this problem. He no longer works for Mackie (obviously) and was not aware of all the problems. Let's just say he was less than thrilled at how Mackie tech support has handled this problem.

To make a long story short: after months of trying to figure out my problem, it took a talk with the designer and a couple of minutes with my screwdriver to finally get it resolved.

The CM Automation console does not use touch sensitive faders not because Carl Malone is unsatisfied with them but because they cost too much to include on this fader pack they sought to design.

By the way, if you're interested, there are two rows of holes on the underside. The one that is "L" shaped (7 in a row with one staggered) is the row you need to work with. Counterclockwise decreases the sensitivity.

[This message has been edited by blairl (edited 09-27-99).]

Ray Fabi
10-01-1999, 02:23 PM
Hmm! Almost a solution... well not for me it was not! The sensitivity screw at the bottom was one of the first things we tried about 10 months ago to solve the problem. Yah, it did raise the sensitivity to a good level, so well that the next fader would also respond to the same command - meaning that adjacent faders would respond even though we were not even touching them! Not very practical when mixing... Hey, don't let me stop anybody from trying to solve this issue, but personnaly I switched to the Pro Control months ago, and am very happy I did. Now my partner is using my old HUI in Studio B, and i guess he is having better luck with it.

Ray Fabi
Ton of Bricks Studios Montreal

10-03-1999, 01:24 AM
Hey do any of you guys have a microlynx in your system??? I found that when i power down the microlynx the HUI started working again. As soon as i power it back on it locks up. the only conclusion i could come up with is that the microlynx is another device that is connected to a serial port of the mac. further i found that if i disconected ther serial cable and powered up the the problem was gone. So now i have pulled the microlynx apart and re seated all the cards, plugged it all back in and WALLAH!!! it all seems to be working every day now for at least a week. I wont even begin to tell you how much money i lost BECAUSE MY ROOM WOULDN'T WORK!!!!!!!!!!

Mackie may be the innocent victom of someone elses grounding problem. Maybe thats why they cant find the problem.

Maybe I'm crazy or just lucky, but mine is working again.


10-06-1999, 05:42 PM
Fellow HUI Users,

I too had the aforementioned sticky fader problem, and solved it in the following manner: I ran a length of Monster Cable from one of the screws on the bottom of the HUI (the ones on the perimiter, screwed into the chassis) to a copper water pipe in a corner of my control room. Problem solved. Hope this helps.

Garry Rindfuss

10-09-1999, 09:48 AM
To tell you the truth, I think Mackie has dropped the ball on HUI. Their R&D is concentrating on making their own DAW. The last time I talked to Mackie, they don't even get current updates from Digi to test the HUI with!. The HUI has the potential to be a very exandable unit (Fader packs/ethernet) but it still basically the same unit since it's release. They did however change the faders due to the problems with the original ones. I did have problems with faders also. But after the third one, I got one that I've been happy with. Also the tech at Mackie said that if anyone has a continual fader problem they would take the unit back and refund your money.